Happy 2018 to everyone. With this post I will move back briefly back to the JFK assassination and to Congressional inquiries in general. As I’ve said many times before, normally political/party self interest makes such hearings and inquiries nothing more than an exercise in stage management and accomplishes relatively little. The government has a horrible record of investigating itself; actually agency IG’s do a far better job – but in terms of actual effect, such work is usually defeated by bureaucracy and career interests. The CIA IG investigation of the Bay of Pigs fiasco is a case in point. More recently the CIA and FBI investigations of 9/11 produced some very solid results and recommendations – which were officially ignored.
Even when a special investigation does turn up some solid evidence of dereliction of duty, as in the 9/11 Commission or the Kerry Committee, politics somehow manages to protect those responsible – I detailed that in Surprise Attack so no need to elaborate here.
Yet there are exceptions, as an example the work of the Church Committee, the Pike Committee and the Kerry Committee exposed a significant of amount of CIA and FBI “sins” and raised fundamental questions in regard to the operation of those agencies. In particular the Kerry committee exposed the extent to which the National Security Act of 1947 and secret agreements with the Justice Department actually protected both CIA and Reagan Administration assets involved in massive drug smuggling.
Good work can be done by committees, although it normally has to be done in closed session, it requires professional investigators and it has to be done within an Administration that is not afraid of skeletons in the Presidential closet.
Recently, as part of the JFK 101 series, Chuck Ochelli, Carmine Savastino and I spent two hours digging into the work of the Church Committee and the activities it exposed – as well as its role in setting the stage for the House Select Committee on Assassinations. In terms of understanding the evolution of JFK assassination revelations I think it was a worthwhile effort; you can find it at the following link: